Afghan President on official visit to India

Afghan President Hamid Karzai arrived in India Thursday for a four-day visit, with Washington hoping New Delhi can persuade him to sign a deal allowing US troops to stay on post-2014.

Karzai is scheduled to meet Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

The president’s office said he would “discuss ways to enhance bilateral relations and cooperation” with India in the build-up to the departure of some 75,000 NATO troops from Afghanistan at the end of next year.

Karzai has long enjoyed close relations with New Delhi which is keen to ensure the exit of the US-led NATO troops does not trigger a return to power in Kabul of the Taliban, which was allied with India’s historic rival Pakistan.

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